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University of Minnesota Extension

Honoring the Gift of Heart Health

Honoring the Gift of Heart Health is an educational program designed to help American Indian (AI) and Alaska Native (AN) adults prevent heart disease. Course topics include nutrition, physical activity, and smoking cessation. Content is tailored to the needs, culture, and beliefs of AI and AN communities.

Native American man exercising


Honoring the Gift of Heart Health helps participants learn key lessons about preventing heart disease, including how to:

  • Recognize and respond to heart disease risk factors and heart attack warning signs.
  • Be more physically active.
  • Prevent or lower high blood pressure and high blood cholesterol.
  • Achieve and/or maintain a healthy weight.
  • Eat healthy foods on a budget and plan and prepare heart-healthy AI or AN meals.
  • Quit smoking for their own and loved ones’ benefit.

Space and time requirements

This program consists of 10 sessions, most of which last about two hours. Session 1 is a bit shorter, while Session 5 might last a little longer. Sessions can be adapted to meet the learning needs of participants, and within reason to fit the space and time needs of the partnering agency.

More information

Honoring the Gift of Heart Health was developed through a partnership between the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and the Indian Health Service. Sessions contain a mix of instruction, discussion, and hands-on activities.

To find out more about this program or explore the possibilities of this program being offered at your agency, contact the SNAP-Ed team.

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